Autumn Sage Salvia greggii 'Emperor'

👤 Non-toxic to humans
🐾 Non-toxic to pets
🌸 Blooming
🍪 Not edible
‍🌱 Easy-care
autumn sage 'Emperor'


Salvia greggii 'Emperor', commonly known as Autumn Sage, features a striking display of vibrant, richly colored flowers. The blossoms exhibit a deep, intense hue, typically a shade of red or purple that commands attention in any garden setting. Each individual flower is tubular, boasting a lipped appearance that is characteristic of the sage family, with petals that may exhibit slight variations in shade, often creating a two-toned effect that adds visual interest. The foliage of the Autumn Sage is equally attractive, consisting of small, aromatic leaves that are oval to lance-shaped. These leaves are often a bright, shiny green, providing a lush background that further accentuates the brilliance of the flowers. In some conditions, the leaves may display a hint of grayish overlay, lending the plant a soft, textured look. The stems are slender and woody, branching to create a dense, bushy form. Over the flowering season, these stems become cloaked in the colorful blossoms, creating a showy display that is both long-lasting and resilient. Despite the absence of size details, the overall impression is of a well-proportioned plant, with a harmonious balance between the foliage and florals, making it an ideal choice for borders or as a standout specimen in a mixed planting.

Plant Info
Common Problems

About this plant

  • memoNames

    • Family


    • Synonyms

      Autumn Sage, Cherry Sage, Gregg's Salvia, Texas Red Sage.

    • Common names

      Salvia greggii 'Emperor'.

  • skullToxicity

    • To humans

      Autumn Sage, the common name for Salvia greggii 'Emperor', is generally not considered toxic to humans. As with many plants, individuals might experience mild reactions if they have specific allergies or sensitivities, but it is not known to contain substances that cause systemic toxicity when ingested. Accidental ingestion of small quantities is unlikely to result in more than mild gastrointestinal upset, if any symptoms occur at all.

    • To pets

      Autumn Sage is, similarly, not classified as a toxic plant to pets. This means that dogs, cats, and other household pets are unlikely to experience serious symptoms if they ingest parts of this plant. However, it is always possible for pets to have individual sensitivities or allergic reactions, and the ingestion of any plant material can potentially result in mild gastrointestinal upset such as vomiting or diarrhea. It's best to monitor your pet and consult a veterinarian if any concerning symptoms arise after the ingestion of any plant.

  • infoCharacteristics

    • Life cycle


    • Foliage type


    • Color of leaves


    • Flower color


    • Height

      2 feet (0.61 meters)

    • Spread

      2 feet (0.61 meters)

    • Plant type


    • Hardiness zones


    • Native area



  • money-bagGeneral Benefits

    • Attracts Pollinators: Salvia greggii 'Emperor' is known to attract bees, butterflies, and hummingbirds, aiding in pollination.
    • Drought Tolerance: Once established, it is highly tolerant of drought conditions, requiring minimal watering.
    • Low Maintenance: This plant has minimal pruning and maintenance requirements.
    • Long Blooming Period: The 'Emperor' variety has a long flowering season, providing color throughout much of the year.
    • Deer Resistance: It is generally resistant to deer, which makes it suitable for gardens in deer-prone areas.
    • Heat Tolerance: It can withstand high temperatures, making it ideal for hot climates.
    • Color Variety: Flowers in various shades offer a range of colors that can fit different landscape designs.
    • Compact Size: Its moderate growth habit makes it suitable for small spaces or as a border plant.
    • Fragrant Foliage: The leaves are aromatic, which can add a pleasant scent to the garden.

  • medicalMedical Properties

    This plant is not used for medical purposes.

  • windAir-purifying Qualities

    This plant is not specifically known for air purifying qualities.

  • leavesOther Uses

    • Salvia greggii 'Emperor', also known as Autumn Sage, can be used as a natural fabric dye, providing hues ranging from soft greens to subtle browns depending on the mordant used.
    • Autumn Sage leaves may be incorporated into potpourris for a fresh, herbal scent in home fragrance mixes, complementing floral and citrusy notes.
    • The flowers of Autumn Sage can be utilized in edible landscaping; the blossoms are both ornamental and can be used as a colorful garnish for salads or desserts.
    • Aromatic oils from Autumn Sage can be infused in candles to create a pleasant aroma that can fill indoor spaces with a calming scent.
    • Dried Autumn Sage branches can serve as kindling for campfires or fireplaces, contributing a fragrant herbal scent when burned.
    • The plant can be used in landscape design as a natural, living border or hedge, providing both aesthetic appeal and habitat for wildlife.
    • Autumn Sage can be incorporated into floral arrangements for a touch of the wild, as its sprigs add texture and a rustic look when mixed with other flowers.
    • Its vibrant flowers can be used as a natural colorant for crafting non-toxic, eco-friendly inks for art projects.
    • Autumn Sage can play a role in companion planting in vegetable gardens, attracting pollinators and beneficial insects to support overall garden health.
    • The cut stems of Autumn Sage are durable and can be used in homemade wreaths or as part of a dried floral display, maintaining their shape and color over time.

Interesting Facts

  • bedFeng Shui

    The Autumn Sage is not used in Feng Shui practice.

  • aquariusZodiac Sign Compitability

    The Autumn Sage is not used in astrology practice.

  • spiralPlant Symbolism

    • Wisdom: Derived from its genus 'Salvia' which is closely related to the herb sage, a symbol of wisdom and knowledge.
    • Healing: Many Salvia species have been used in traditional medicine, hence it carries the symbolic meaning of healing and health.
    • Longevity: As a plant that is hardy and long-lived, it symbolizes endurance and the wish for a long life.
    • Purification: Sage, in many cultures, is used for purification rituals, and so Salvia carries this symbolism as well.
    • Immortality: Throughout history, sage has been associated with immortality, and since Salvia greggii is a member of this family, it shares this symbolic meaning.

Every 1-2 weeks
2500 - 10000 Lux
Every 2-3 years
Spring-Early Summer
As needed
  • water dropWater

    Autumn Sage requires moderate watering; establish young plants with regular watering but once mature, water deeply only every two weeks during the growing season. During hot, dry periods, you may increase the frequency to once a week, providing about 1-2 gallons depending on the size of the plant and the soil's moisture retention. Ensure the soil dries out between watering to prevent root rot, as this plant is drought-tolerant and does not do well with wet feet. In the winter, reduce watering significantly and only water if there are extended dry periods without rain, using the same amount, 1-2 gallons, to keep the plant hydrated.

  • sunLight

    Autumn Sage thrives in full sun conditions where it can receive at least 6-8 hours of direct sunlight daily. The ideal spot for Autumn Sage is in an area that is protected from harsh afternoon sun in extremely hot climates. However, in most regions, a location with unobstructed sunlight will encourage the best flowering and growth.

  • thermometerTemperature

    Autumn Sage can handle temperatures as low as 10 degrees Fahrenheit but thrives in much warmer conditions. It prefers a temperature range between 60 and 85 degrees Fahrenheit during the growing season. Ideally, to ensure the plant's health and vitality, keep it in an environment where the temperature doesn’t frequently drop below 20 degrees Fahrenheit in the winter.

  • scissorsPruning

    Autumn Sage should be pruned to maintain shape, encourage bushier growth, and promote more vigorous blooming. Prune lightly in early spring to remove any winter damage and to shape the plant. Following the first flush of blooms, prune back by one-third to encourage a second bloom cycle. The best time for major pruning is in late winter or early spring before new growth begins.

  • broomCleaning

    As needed

  • bambooSoil

    Autumn Sage prefers well-draining soil with a loamy texture, enriched with organic matter. A suitable soil mix could be a combination of garden soil, compost, perlite or coarse sand to aid drainage. The soil pH should be slightly acidic to neutral, ranging from 6.1 to 7.5 for optimal growth.

  • plantRepotting

    Autumn Sage should be repotted every 2-3 years to replenish its soil and encourage healthy growth. It is best to repot in the spring before new growth begins.

  • water dropsHumidity & Misting

    Autumn Sage thrives in average humidity conditions; it does not require high humidity environments. The best humidity level for this plant is between 40% and 60%.

  • pinSuitable locations

    • Indoor

      Place in bright, indirect light and ensure good air circulation.

    • Outdoor

      Plant in full sun to partial shade in well-draining soil.

    • Hardiness zone

      7-9 USDA

  • circleLife cycle

    Autumn Sage 'Emperor', commonly called Salvia greggii 'Emperor', begins its life cycle as a seed, which germinates in warm, moist soil conditions typically in spring. Upon sprouting, the seedling establishes a root system and grows into a vegetative stage with characteristic aromatic foliage. As the plant matures, it enters the flowering stage, usually in late spring to early summer, producing vibrant red to burgundy flowers that attract pollinators such as bees and hummingbirds. Following pollination, the flowers develop into small nutlets containing seeds, completing the reproductive cycle. During late fall or with the onset of cold weather, the plant may enter a dormant phase, especially in cooler climates, where it conserves energy until favorable conditions return. This perennial herbaceous plant will re-emerge and continue its growth cycle in the subsequent growing season, often expanding in size with each year.

  • sproutPropogation

    • Propogation time

      Spring-Early Summer

    • The most popular method of propagating the Autumn Sage, or Salvia greggii 'Emperor', is through cuttings. This method is commonly carried out in late spring or early summer when the plant is growing most vigorously. To propagate from cuttings, a gardener should select a healthy, non-flowering stem and cut a 4 to 6-inch (approximately 10 to 15 centimeters) length, making the cut just below a node. The lower leaves are removed, and the cut end is dipped in rooting hormone to encourage root development. The cutting is then placed in a well-draining soil mix, ensuring that at least one node is below the surface. The pot should be kept moist and in a warm, indirect light until roots have developed, which typically takes 4 to 6 weeks. Once roots are established, the new Autumn Sage plant can be transplanted to a larger pot or directly into the garden.